In large part because of technology, our culture seems fixated on new things. Heirlooms and keepsakes from the past don’t hold as much significance as they used to, and thrift stores are overflowing with discarded old personal belongings. This work explores the way that the significance of these belongings changes with the context in which they are viewed.
Culled from antique and thrift stores, I am using old photographs, letters, postcards, and other items to fabricate seemingly personal keepsake collections. I am interested in the relationships created within the curated groupings of items, and the suggestion of memory and personal narrative.
I chose to include a photograph or photographic negative as central to each arrangement because of the inherent narrative quality of photographs, but also because of the way that photographs serve as visual keepsakes—a way to memorialize single moments and times past. In a time when most photographs don’t exist outside of our computers or cell phones, the physicality of printed photographs represents a soon-to-be obsolete way of cataloguing memories.
Because of this idea of photographs as visual keepsakes, I chose to photograph and print the arrangements of objects. Each image offers a brief glimpse into the now-anonymous lives of the objects’ original owners, and the rest of the narrative is left up to the viewer to invent.